Wyoming

IEEFA Research

IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017: Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals

IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017: Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals

Production Declining by as Much as 40 Million Tons; Prices Failing to Benefit Shareholders or Stimulate New Investment; Anemic Exports; Little or No Gain From Regulatory Relief; Increasingly Dim Employment Prospects

We’re out this morning with our annual outlook for U.S. coal markets, and the picture isn’t pretty. We see the potential for some short-lived strength in the current uptick for coal producers but the title of our assessment sums up the larger view: “Short-Term Gains Will Be Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals.” You can […]

As Texas Coal-Fired Power Plants Close, Powder River Basin Mines Are Losing Their Largest Customers

Trends Will Force Closures and Complicate Efforts by Alpha Natural Resources, Arch Coal and Peabody Energy to Work Their Way Out of Bankruptcy

CLEVELAND, Aug. 3, 2016 (IEEFA.org) — The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis today published a report detailing how Powder River Basin coal producers are losing their largest customers as Texas power producers turn increasingly to other sources of energy. The report, “Texas’ Outsize Role in the Decline of the Powder River Basin Coal […]

August 2, 2016 Read More →
The Federal Government’s Coal-Leasing Program Is Broken: Here’s How to Fix It

The Federal Government’s Coal-Leasing Program Is Broken: Here’s How to Fix It

Appoint a Price-Setting Commission; Ban Exports; Cancel Some Leases; Eliminate Self-Bonding; Mandate Set-Asides for Mine Clean-up and Miner Pensions; Require Twice-a-Year Audits; Assume Smaller Markets

It’s time for the U.S. to modernize how it manages its publicly owned coal reserves. That’s the essence of comments we’ve filed today with the Department of the Interior as it begins a review of its federal coal-leasing program in the Powder River Basin, a program that has been mismanaged for years at taxpayer expense […]

As the BLM Begins Coal-Lease ‘Listening Sessions,’ a Few Hard Truths Must Be Heard

As the BLM Begins Coal-Lease ‘Listening Sessions,’ a Few Hard Truths Must Be Heard

Ban Coal Exports From the Powder River Basin, for Starters, and Impose a Moratorium on Taxpayer-Subsidized Leases

U.S. taxpayers own the largest remaining domestic coal reserves in the country, valuable resources that sit in the Powder River Basin of Montana and Wyoming and that are vital to the energy security of our country. The federal government, sad to say, has been an almost pathologically passive overseer of these resources (read more about […]

August 11, 2015 Read More →
Comments on Proposed Consolidated Federal Oil and Gas and Federal and Indian Coal Valuation Reform, ONRR-2012-0004-0024

Comments on Proposed Consolidated Federal Oil and Gas and Federal and Indian Coal Valuation Reform, ONRR-2012-0004-0024

COAL SOLD FOR EXPORT SHOULD NOT BE EXEMPT FROM FEDERAL ROYALTY PAYMENTS

Comments on Proposed Consolidated Federal Oil and Gas and Federal and Indian Coal Valuation Reform, ONRR-2012-0004-0024 By Tom Sanzillo, Director of Finance, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis

May 7, 2015 Read More →
Report – No Need for New U.S. Coal Ports: Data Shows Oversupply in Capacity

Report – No Need for New U.S. Coal Ports: Data Shows Oversupply in Capacity

No Need for New U.S. Coal Ports: Data Shows Oversupply in Capacity (pdf) By Tom Sanzillo, Director of Finance, IEEFA  

November 19, 2014 Read More →
Report: 20 Fourth-Quarter Questions for Powder River Basin Coal Producers

Report: 20 Fourth-Quarter Questions for Powder River Basin Coal Producers

20 Fourth-Quarter Questions for Powder River Basin Coal Producers (pdf) By Tom Sanzillo, Director of Finance, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis

November 11, 2014 Read More →
Memo- Response to the Department of Interior, Office of Inspector General Audit on Federal Coal Leasing Program

Memo- Response to the Department of Interior, Office of Inspector General Audit on Federal Coal Leasing Program

Policy memo: Response to the Department of Interior, Office of Inspector General Audit on Federal Coal Leasing Program June 28, 2013 (pdf)

July 1, 2013 Read More →
IEEFA Report: Almost $30 Billion in Revenues Lost to Taxpayers by ‘Great Giveaway’ of Federally Owned Coal in Powder River Basin

IEEFA Report: Almost $30 Billion in Revenues Lost to Taxpayers by ‘Great Giveaway’ of Federally Owned Coal in Powder River Basin

Almost $30 billion in revenues lost to taxpayers by “giveaway” of federally owned coal in Powder River Basin (pdf) With almost no accountability, BLM failure created boom in electric power industry use of artificially cheap coal from Montana and Wyoming; Next major coal sale set for Thursday   WASHINGTON, D.C. – June 25, 2012 – […]

June 25, 2012 Read More →

More News and Commentary

Westmoreland Gets New Financing, but Problems Remain

Casper Star-Tribune: The coal firm that operates the Kemmerer mine in western Wyoming has secured $110 million from a majority of its existing creditors to help ease financial pressure. The cash injection will buy Westmoreland Coal Co. time to plan for long-term viability ahead of a likely bankruptcy filing, some experts said Tuesday. “To me, […]

May 25, 2018 Read More →

Naughton Closure Likely To Undercut Demand At Westmoreland’s Kemmerer Mine

Casper Star Tribune: Fossil fuel critics are questioning a Wyoming plan to spend up to $22.5 million in public funds to expand a coal mine even as its owner appears headed for bankruptcy and a key customer prepares to curtail consumption. State lawmakers earlier this year approved a measure that earmarked $15 million to relocate […]

May 14, 2018 Read More →

Push to End Self-Bonding in Wyoming Picks Up Speed

The Sheridan Press: The Powder River Basin Resource Council has submitted a petition to the [Wyoming] Department of Environmental Quality to end self-bonding for coal companies in the state, contributing to mounting pressure against the practice. Federal law requires coal companies to secure bonds that will guarantee the costs to restore the land a mine […]

May 7, 2018 Read More →
IEEFA Update: Taxpayer Exposure to U.S. Coal Reclamation Costs Runs Deep

IEEFA Update: Taxpayer Exposure to U.S. Coal Reclamation Costs Runs Deep

Public Risk in Alaska, Colorado, Missouri, North Dakota, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming

A report that came out last month from the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office recommends that Congress eliminate the risky system of self-bonding by coal-mining companies. But the report also raises concerns about the financial stability of surety-bond companies, a much more common form of reclamation bonding, as well as problems with underfunding for mine cleanup costs. […]

April 20, 2018 Read More →

Editorial: Wyoming Requires an Honest Public Conversation on the Future of Its Economy

Casper Star-Tribune: Because coal in Wyoming isn’t going to reach pre-bust levels, regardless of what happens to the Clean Power Plan. Pruitt isn’t doing the industry any favors by ignoring the market forces that have driven its decline. Wyoming added five coal jobs since the bottom of the bust in 2016. That means that while […]

April 9, 2018 Read More →

Pushback in Wyoming Over Mine Cleanup Responsibilities

Associated Press: A citizen regulatory board has decided more review is needed on proposed rules on how coal companies secure the cost of cleaning up any of their mines that close in Wyoming. The Land Quality Advisory Board on Wednesday remanded the proposed self-bonding rules back to state regulators at the Department of Environmental Quality […]

March 30, 2018 Read More →

Wyoming Coal Producer Pins Its Hopes on Asia

S&P Global Market Intelligence: Cloud Peak Energy Inc. is focusing on international markets and the prospect of diminishing utility stockpiles for future coal sales, as limited port capacity and potentially low gas prices threaten 2018 production levels. The coal producer reported a net income of $17.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2017, a 27.2% […]

February 20, 2018 Read More →

Wyoming Threatens Legal Action as Washington State Distances Itself From Coal Export Project

Longview Daily News (Washington): The state of Wyoming is considering suing Washington state over coal. In yet another plot twist in the protracted Millennium Bulk Terminals saga, a bill introduced Friday by Wyoming state Rep. Chuck Gray, R-Casper, would create a $250,000 “coal terminal litigation account.” Under the legislation, the fund could be used to […]

February 12, 2018 Read More →

CEO’s Past May Torpedo Company’s Plans to Acquire Wyoming Mines

Casper Star-Tribune: In December, a brand new company called Blackjewel LLC announced plans to buy two Wyoming coal mines. They were considered the “crown jewels” of former coal giant Alpha Natural Resources, and Blackjewel said the mines held promise despite declines in the coal market. By mid-January the fate of that future had hit a […]

February 5, 2018 Read More →

Op Ed: It’s Time To Prohibit Self-Bonding By Coal Companies

Caspar Star Tribune: This past month a completely unknown and unproven company called Blackjewel, LLC “bought” two of Wyoming’s oldest and biggest coal mines. More particularly, they were given the mines in exchange for assuming their cleanup risks and some hypothetical future royalties. They acquired the Eagle Butte and Belle Ayr mines near Gillette from […]

January 8, 2018 Read More →